John O. Swendseid
John O. Swendseid

Member

Phone: 775.323.1980

Fax: 775.323.2339

jswendseid@shermanhoward.com

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Legal Secretary

Tamme Atherton
775.784.0221

Areas of Emphasis

Public Finance

Education

  • Juris Doctor, Boalt Hall School of Law, University of California, 1977
  • Bachelor of Arts, magna cum laude, Gonzaga University, 1974

John Swendseid has been practicing with the firm’s Public Finance Group since 1977. He works as bond counsel and swap counsel to governmental entities in Nevada and Colorado, and as federal income tax counsel on state and municipal financings in the Rocky Mountain/Great Basin area. John has assisted government clients in bond financing of a variety of capital projects, such as schools, highways, and other infrastructure.

John’s bond counsel experience includes drafting and reviewing legislation and documents for all types of state and local government financings. This includes documentation authorizing tax-exempt bonds and documentation of bond-related transactions like interest rate swaps and other hedges, letters of credit, and investment instruments for investing bond-related funds.

Throughout the years, John has concentrated much of his professional activities in the area of federal income tax law applicable to state and local government finance. He currently assists the firm’s public finance tax lawyers in drafting and reviewing documentation to ensure compliance with federal income tax laws applicable to tax-exempt bonds and to other tax-advantaged bonds. John also helps draft and review opinions on federal income tax matters related to tax-exempt financings, as well as other types of tax-favored governmental financings, and assists in researching and advising the firm’s clients and other bond lawyers of changes in federal income tax law that may affect state and local government finance. John’s tax practice also includes representing governmental entities that issue bonds in Internal Revenue Service (IRS) audits of tax-exempt and tax-credit bonds.

John was a member of the Board of Directors of the National Association of Bond Lawyers from 2004 to 2007 and was one of three editors of “Federal Taxation of Municipal Bonds,” a 12-volume compilation of federal law dealing with the tax exemption of interest on government bonds. He has been a sought-after speaker at programs dealing with legal and federal income tax aspects of government bonds sponsored by the National Association of Bond Lawyers, the Section of Taxation of the American Bar Association, the Practicing Law Institute, and several other sponsors.

John received the National Association of Bond Lawyers’ Carlson Prize in 2008, which is awarded to the person who submits the best scholarly article for publication in “The Bond Lawyer” in that year. Highly respected by his peers, John was selected to serve as the Vice-Chair and then Chair of the Committee on Tax-Exempt Finance of the Section of Taxation of the American Bar Association. Regarded as a leader in the field, he is a Fellow of the prestigious American College of Bond Counsel, which recognizes lawyers with established reputations among their peers for their skill, experience and high standards of professional and ethical conduct in the practice of bond.

Representative Matters
  • Served as lead bond and tax counsel for over $4 billion Clark County, Nevada Airport (Las Vegas-McCarran International Airport) revenue bonds sold in 2000-2019
  • Served as principal swap counsel for Colorado Housing and Finance Authority and McCarran International Airport on more than 100 interest rate and other swaps, swap modifications, and swap terminations executed in 2000-2019
  • Served as bond and tax counsel for Clark County School District, Nevada, tax-advantaged $110,245,000 series 2010 C & D qualified school construction bonds, and various other re-funding and construction bonds of Clark County School District sold in 2000-2019 with a principal amount exceeding $4 billion
  • Served as bond and tax counsel for over $500 million State of Nevada Unemployment Compensation Fund special revenue bonds, series 2013
Professional Activities

BAR ADMISSIONS

  • Colorado
  • Nevada

 

PROFESSIONAL AFFILIATIONS

  • Clark County Bar Association
  • Washoe Bar Association
  • Colorado Bar Association
  • Denver Bar Association
  • National Association of Bond Lawyers
    • Former Board of Directors Member
    • Former Chair, Web Site Editorial Board
    • Former Chair, Tax and Securities Law Institute
    • Former Vice Chair, Tax and Securities Law Institute
    • Former Chair, General Taxation Committee
  • Committee on Tax Exempt Financing of the American Bar Association Section on Taxation
    • Former Committee Chair
    • Former Committee Vice Chair
    • Former Chair, Task Force on Prepayment Regulations
    • Former Chair, Task Force on Restrictions on Private Activity Bonds
  • Fellow, American College of Bond Counsel
    • Former Member, Membership Selection Committee
  • Former Steering Committee Member, Bond Attorneys Workshop
  • Former Editorial Board Member, Federal Taxation of Municipal Bonds
  • Former Member, Sherman & Howard Executive Committee
Honors and Awards
  • American College of Bond Counsel, Fellow
  • National Association of Bond Lawyers, “Carlson Prize,” for the best scholarly article submitted for publication in The Bond Lawyer (2008)
  • Best Lawyers in America, Public Finance Law (2007-2020)
Publications and Presentations

PUBLICATIONS

 

PRESENTATIONS

  • Bond Attorneys Workshop Panelist
    Chicago and San Antonio
    1990 – 1998; 2002 – 2014
  • Committee on Tax Exempt Financing Panelist
    American Bar Association Section of Taxation
    2000; 2009 – 2013
  • Dodd-Frank Regulations Applicable to Municipal Swaps
    National Association of Bond Lawyers Teleconference
    2013